We Happy Few Is Nothing Like Bioshock, Avoid Disappointment

We Happy Few Is Nothing Like Bioshock, Avoid Disappointment

We happy Few has seemingly got many people confused. When ever you see a gameplay video or Early Access lets play, you’ll be sure to see someone mention Bioshock. The unfortunate thing, at least for them, is We Happy Few has little to no shared Bioshock vibes.

Gameplay is based purely on survival, this is not a simple case of shooting your way through. The player is vulnerable, struggling to keep their head above water. Areas are open, allowing the player to explore and discover. Yes, We Happy Few is played in the first person, but that’s one of the few similarities the two games share.

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The tone of the game is totally different from the underwater dystopia rife with social issues and political intrigue. We Happy Few is much closer to the likes of The Twilight Zone and 60s/70s BBC news coverage. It’s all very polite and clean, regardless of the subject matter. It’s how We Happy Few creates its creepy and unnerving atmosphere. Forced smiles, blocking out the dark past, ignorance is bliss…even if it comes at the cost of your mental state.

Bioshock was much more direct experience. The world was already falling apart by the time you arrived. You, as the player, weren’t part of Rapture’s population, you were merely a visitor. We Happy Few is from the point of view of someone who has lived within the culture. They’re part of the system, a system which is breaking them down. It’s a pretty major difference between how the two games frame their stories and approach.

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Most importantly, We Happy Few simply plays differently. As mentioned before, the game is focused mostly on survival elements. People expecting a straight laced shooter may be underwhelmed to find that combat makes up very little of the game, at least initially.

It almost feels that We Happy Few and Bioshock are being lumped in together through it being ‘the easy option’. In all fairness, it could be association through the imagery. Both games are set in the early 60s, resulting in the two games sharing similar culture traits. Clothing, language and music are both heavily defined by their time period. Beyond that, any connection made between the two is questionable at best.

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Do yourself a favour, don’t go into We Happy Few expecting anything like Bioshock. Survival mechanics and rogue-like elements will be the only thing you’ll find, not a story driven shooter with minor RPG elements.

Sean Halliday


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